Several years ago, when college conference expansion/realignment was in full swing, there grew to be a proliferation of mysterious Twitter accounts which claimed to have knowledge and #sources about impending (dare I say, imminent) changes and contracts to shift the college sports landscape.
While we are a bit removed from those times of yore, there are still a handful of Twitter users willing to feed your appetite and provide the best in conference realignment sourcing and rumors.
The Dude has been at it with the best of them for years, but as recently as within the last week he's been dropping hints and sourced information for the masses:
Cue the theme for jaws as the Big 12 shark stalks its prey.— Christopher Lambert (@theDudeofWV) May 21, 2015
More about the Big 12 later... opportunity could soon come knockin'— Christopher Lambert (@theDudeofWV) May 21, 2015
@iLLDuce @TalkinACCSports A good source told me the best way for the ACC to increase $ was to contract.— Christopher Lambert (@theDudeofWV) May 21, 2015
He tweets about BYU sometimes:
My personal opinion is that BYU & UCF are the next two in the B12 & their addition is inevitable.— Christopher Lambert (@theDudeofWV) May 20, 2014
...even if while using narratives that aren't true...
@pfac51 the issue with BYU is Sunday play. If BYU would agree to play basketball & olympic sports on Sunday they would be in the B12 now.— Christopher Lambert (@theDudeofWV) March 5, 2014
Simply put, you'll never go long without some kind of tease regarding the Big 12 and usually its expansion or lack thereof.
While relatively quiet on the realignment/expansion front recently, Yoda is still in the realignment game while passing along some crazy tidbit from a West Virginia fan (that's where all the real fun realignment talk happens, on West Virginia message boards).
@TuxedoYoda WVU fan on a Cle. Brown blog states he has inside info that Big12 invite to UC & ECU in 1 month: http://t.co/cbI5VemQ9A— John Hemelgarn (@98bearcat) May 8, 2015
But there are usually takes (and inside info!) about expansion:
Told by an athletics guy in Austin & an East Coast media/website guy that realignment is about to start popping again.— Tuxedo Yoda (@TuxedoYoda) October 2, 2014
I was told this morning there is serious talk among B12 members about realignment, All East. Absolutely no shot for Boise& BYU. Zero.— Tuxedo Yoda (@TuxedoYoda) December 8, 2014
UConn, Cinci & UCF are easy selections for the Big 12. USF vs BYU is the tough call......— Tuxedo Yoda (@TuxedoYoda) April 18, 2014
BYU and B12 officials meeting this weekend. Scheduling alliance? Football only membership? Something else? I don't know.....— Tuxedo Yoda (@TuxedoYoda) May 17, 2014
And whatever this is supposed to mean:
Conference realignment is so bizarre. If Baylor would have handled an average WVU team, UCF and Cincinnati stay in the minor leagues.— Tuxedo Yoda (@TuxedoYoda) December 7, 2014
This guy, though bizarre that it is another "(ironic/unrelated word)(Star Wars character)" name, is probably the most currently active tweeter on expansion/realignment, and even does so with specifics. He did shoot this vague tweet earlier this month, which he replied in the ensuing thread was about BYU:
Holy crap! Didn't see that coming. That changes quite a bit.— Utini (@PromiscuousJawa) May 8, 2015
Here's a sample, all from no further ago than March. His most prominent source/prediction is that Cincinnati is destined for the ACC soon.
I don't have a "when" yet but you can absolutely take it to the bank Cincinnati is ACC bound. B12, you whiffed on this.— Utini (@PromiscuousJawa) March 18, 2015
Lots of doubters. I'll say it again. Cincinnati will be in the ACC. Doubt All you want but it will happen. Just working out the $— Utini (@PromiscuousJawa) April 8, 2015
B10 apparently not giving up on Vanderbilt yet. Still trying to work it.— Utini (@PromiscuousJawa) March 5, 2015
Remember when they said four 16 team leagues? I didn't believe it. But now? I think I do. What will teams like IowaSt do after B12 folds?— Utini (@PromiscuousJawa) March 2, 2015
There won't be an ACC network or ACC expansion before ESPN figures out their status on B1Gs T1 rights.— Utini (@PromiscuousJawa) March 5, 2015
I'll reveal my identity once the B12 expands. Until then I won't jeopardize my access to info. I'm no one that you've mentioned.— Utini (@PromiscuousJawa) March 5, 2015
A newer addition to the core group of Twitterers with expansion/realignment/contract knowledge is this apparent Minnesota fan.
If OU has options 7-8-9-10 years from now they will again not look to stabilize the B12. If PAC acted on OU application OU would be gone.— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) May 16, 2015
This guy who is sending me the info is convinced Delany is setting up CSU in Big Ten under new TV contract for 2017. I don't believe it..but— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) May 10, 2015
...this guy holds a position in a Denver area Alumni Club..and he has stats...and stats...must be part of some PR firm— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) May 10, 2015
He has BYU info too:
BYU has a national brand...following....money. BYU would be school #11 if details can be worked out. CINCY is right behind UCF IMO.— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) December 8, 2014
3) If Big 12 decides anytime in the near future that it needs to expand expect the Big 12 to work around BYU conditions. BYU value >>> 12th— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) December 10, 2014
But wait! There's more! Inter-expansion-account strife!
When I gave my opinion to @theDudeofWV that CCG were not going away..I was told I didnt have FACTS Here is your FACT dude. MWC CCG on ESPN!— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) May 15, 2015
Subtweeting The Dude about Grant Of Rights language in the Big 12 media contracts:
The dude was for a GOR possibly being breached before he was against it... And now he gives us one of his laughable sermons— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) May 15, 2015
Its ok if people have different views on different issues. If you differ from Chris it doesn't mean your stupid or a scam artist.— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) May 15, 2015
..it just probably means you haven't caught him on a day where he hasn't switched his mind(sources) ...just wait..at some point he'll agree.— Greg Flugaur (@flugempire) May 15, 2015
The grandfather of all #hot #expansion #sources #and #hashtags has been at it for quite some time. The man who may have bit really hard on an obvious piece of satire about expansion (and like half of the Internet, can't spell the word definitely)
@W_Palmer @zbloxham: Good stuff...it's definately heating up, just a matter on when.— GREG SWAIM (@GSwaim) January 27, 2012
...spent considerable time not only tweeting about Big 12 rumors but also writing about it. Curiously, though, I have a really hard time finding any of his blog posts that still exist on the matter.
For example, the link on this tweet is dead:
Expansion Westward is in Progress: http://t.co/iqcDwkb #Pac12 #Big12 #Sooners #OKState #Horns #Hookem #RedRaiders #UT #Baylor #Mizzou— GREG SWAIM (@GSwaim) September 12, 2011
As is the page for the story linked on this message board, which cites one of Swaim's biggest rumors, that Florida State and Clemson were long-time frontrunners for Big 12 invites.
He often had quite detailed pieces of information, like knowing what teams were on the Big 12's list in the case of expansion to 16 teams.
"@jbtommy: @GSwaim what happened to cincy on expansion?" // Didn't make cut for this addition, but still on 16 list: http://t.co/ENSqbkfy— GREG SWAIM (@GSwaim) October 6, 2011
It'll be BYU and Boise State as the two teams replacing Colorado and Nebraska in the Big 12, and then TCU and SMU to make it 14 eventually.— GREG SWAIM (@GSwaim) September 11, 2010
His vast extent of #sources and willingness to put forth any and every rumor...
What to watch now is if and when Delaney and the #B1G raid #UVa, and sources in Chicago feel that is imminent.— GREG SWAIM (@GSwaim) January 30, 2013
And yes, we are watching this #GT and #UVA to #B1G monday rumor coming out of Chicago today. I just don't think it happens quite that soon.— GREG SWAIM (@GSwaim) December 1, 2012
#B1G source in Chicago at #BCS meetings telling us that #ND agreeing in principle to go to #Big12 as non-football member.— GREG SWAIM (@GSwaim) June 13, 2012
...even spawned a fake parody Twitter account:
Did you catch that guys? I said a BIG TEN source is reporting about Notre Dame's business. #TROLOLOLOLOLOLOLO— Greg Fake Swaim (@FakeGSwaim) June 13, 2012
#TROLOLOLO This guy has followers! -> RT @GSwaim: Don't be surprised if the #Pac12 adds four teams east of the Mississippi— Greg Fake Swaim (@FakeGSwaim) June 27, 2012
"@TomahawkNation Do we need a @FakeGSwaim?" // How else wld you know #Vols #Vandy #UNC #CardNation are joining #Pac12?— Greg Fake Swaim (@FakeGSwaim) June 27, 2012
As far as I can tell, he seems to have slowed down on realignment talk ... because everyone has slowed down realignment talk. But if anything remotely significant hits the Internet in the expansion discussion, I'm betting we'd see a rebirth of Swaim the Swami.
Catch up on the rest of the Dead-Season Series.